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Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, is investing $2 billion in Togo to transform their Phosphate into fertilizers; instead of it being exported as a raw product.

Business mogul Dangote and his plants

An agreement has been signed between the Dangote group and the Togolese government to process Phosphate into Phosphate fertilizers.

Togo is a major producer of phosphate in Africa and has reserves of over two billion. The country hopes that by partnering with Africa’s leading industrialist, they will tap into the manufacturing ability and financial power of Africa’s richest man.

Dangote is currently building the largest Petroleum refinery and fertilizer complex in Africa in Lagos, Nigeria. With its completion, the Dangote group will be the top producer of ammonia in the continent. The Dangote group will provide ammonia produced from its complex to the phosphate plant in Togo. In turn, Togo will use the fertilizers to sell to farmers in the country as well as export to other African countries.

The Togo national development plan aims to structurally transform the country’s economy and building this plant is in line with that objective. Mining work is expected to start before the end of the year. The project is expected to create several thousand jobs at a cost of about $2 billion.

The plant will be constructed in Lome and work is expected to start early next year and commissioned before the end of the year.

Dangote further expands his Pan African move

This is not the first time that the business mogul is investing in other African countries. For instance, he has set up cement plants in 14 African countries. Dangote is a strong believer in transforming Africa’s economy by Africans. Clearly, he is putting his money were his mouth is. More African businessmen need to follow in his footsteps in order for African countries to industrialize their economies. Industrialization will be a key pillar in providing jobs ad eradicating poverty in the continent.

This partnership is a demonstration of what could be achieved with the AFCTA

The Africa continental free trade area (AFCTA) was ratified this past July and came into effect. Dangotes’ partnership with the government of Togo shows what can be achieved if the AFCTA is implemented as designed.

Dangote will provide Ammonia from his Nigeria plant to the Togo Phospate plant he is constructing. The fertilizer produced in the Togo plant in turn will be consumed by farmers in Togo and other African countries.

Africa can be self-sufficient in most of the products she needs if the AFCTA is implemented as planned. The AU and ECA should make sure the rules of the AFCTA are applied to the letter to avoid it being abused by unscrupulous elements.

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Dangote is investing more than $20 billion in agriculture, fertilizer, petrochemical and refinery Projects in Nigeria. He is proof that Africa can quickly industrialize if African governments fully support indigenous entrepreneurs.

Aliko Dangote, CEO Dangote group

Chairman Dangote group and Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, has recently donated a $3.5 million student’s hostel to Ahmedo Bello University, Zaria in Northern Nigeria. This is regarded as the largest private donation to a varsity in Nigeria since independence. This follows several donations he made to other universities across Nigeria. He donated world class Business schools to the University of Ibadan and Bayero University last year.

Dangote through his foundation is also active in economic empowerment, disaster relief and health. Last year, he donated 150 fully kit cars to the Nigerian police force which was the largest ever private donation to Nigeria’s police department.

Dangote’s Investments

According to the industrialist, he was able to accrue his vast fortune because of the opportunities provided to him by Nigeria. As a result, he is obliged to give back and this he is doing hugely.

Dangote is a firm believer in Africa’s potential. This is proven by his investment of $17 billion integrated refinery and petrochemical complex in Lekki free trade zone, Lagos state. Once completed this project will create more than 150,000 direct and indirect jobs for Nigerians.

He also increased investments in agriculture. He is investing $4.6 billion in rice, sugar and diary. According to him, agriculture is among the best ways to industrialize a country. Furthermore, agriculture’s potential for generating employment is massive. He estimated that his investments would provide up to 150,000 jobs.

The business magnate through his conglomorate, the Dangote Group, is also the largest employer in Nigeria after the federal government whilst being reportedly responsible for over 10 percent of Nigeria’s GDP.

Benefits of supporting local entrepreneurs

Millions of youth are unemployed across the African continent. African governments supporting local entrepreneurs to scale up their businesses is key to abating this mounting crisis. Successful indigenous entrepreneurs will do a lot for their respective countries. They will create large number of jobs, donate to charities, participate in social corporate responsibilities and increase national revenues via increased taxes paid to their coffers.

African governments must step up

Dangote is proof that African countries should fully support local entrepreneurs to expand their businesses. Supporting local entrepreneurs will end up benefiting the respective governments greatly. This is because they are willing to invest heavily in their home countries. It is incumbent on African governments to provide incentives to local entrepreneurs to expand their businesses. They should also improve the business environment of their countries.